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Showing posts from July, 2014

W.O.W: Skin of the Wolf

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine that allows bloggers to highlight releases they are eagerly awaiting.
Here's what I'm looking forward to:

Title:  Skin of the Wolf
Author:  Sam Cabot
Publication Date:  July 31, 2014
Page Count:  384 pages

Summary via Goodreads
In Sam Cabot’s exhilarating new novel, a vicious murder in Sotheby’s begins a series of inexplicable events surrounding an Iroquois ritual mask—and a secret that could unleash the most terrifying chaos and destruction the world has ever seen.

Father Thomas Kelly, art historian Livia Pietro, and scholar Spencer George shared shocking, life-changing events in Blood of the Lamb; in that thriller, Father Kelly learned of the existence of the Noantri—a community of vampires—and that Livia and Spencer were among them. Now, a year later, all three are together again in New York City where Livia is attending a conference on Native American art. But when Spencer is attacked in Cent…

Teaser Tuesdays

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Teaser Tuesday:  The Girl in the Road
Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading. Here are the rules: grab whatever you're reading, open to a random page, select no more than two sentence (NO SPOILERS), share the title and author, and GO!
Here's this week's teaser:
"Of all my pain stars, the one in my armpit is shining brightest.  I stop to examine it and see that my entire left flank is soaked with blood.  I pinch the fabric of my shirt and it peels away with a wet sucking sound" --page 96-----The Girl in the Road by Monica Byrne

I'm really enjoying this book so far and I can't wait to see how it plays out.  What are you enjoying?

Happy reading!

Top Ten Tuesday: Authors I Own the Most Books From

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and it's a way to share what you're loving in list form. The topic changes every week, so there is always something new to discover!
This week's theme is:  Authors I Own the Most Books From.  When I find an author I like, I tend to voraciously read everything they've ever written.  It's a disease.  Regardless, here's my list:

Italo Calvino
Born in Cuba and raised in Italy, Italo Calvino is a varied writer.  Ranging from fairy tale-esque to realistic and magical realism to modern/postmodernist, he has something for everyone.  He's a brilliant writer.  13 books...Recommendation:  The Baron in the TreesAlexander McCall Smith
A modern Scottish writer and medical law professor, Alexander McCall Smith is most well-known for his No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series.  However, I am a huge fan of his 44 Scotland Street collection.  Published as serials in The Scotsman newspaper, it's a fun…

Bout of Books 11

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Bout of Books 11
Yes!  It is upon us again.  I have been eagerly awaiting the new Bout of Books Readathon and it is finally here.  I participated, for the first time, in Bout of Books 10 back in May (read about my experience here) and am so excited to be taking part in it again. 

Here are the logistics for the challenge:
I'm hoping I can top what I did last time since I've got a little more free time on my hands during the Summer months, but I haven't actually decided what my goals will be.  However, the weekend of the challenge will probably be neglected a little bit because I will be hitting up a concert in Portland!  My favorite band, Brand New, has finally gone back on tour after a four year hiatus!!!  Yeah buddy! If you want to participate, here's the sign-up link :) Happy reading!

Bookish (And Not So Bookish) Thoughts

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Here's what's on my mind...

1.  Something I'm not looking forward to:  a six day work week...barf!  Working at a university, it is sometimes necessary to work six days a week; roughly about eight Saturdays a year.  These happen sporadically throughout the year, but between June and July our Freshmen Orientation programs take place and 6:30am and me do NOT get along.  One bright side to this:  it's the last one!  Woohoo!

2.  Spending Sunday at the beach...or the Oregon Brewers Festival in Portland...or hiking Silver Falls...or relaxing on my only day off.  We haven't decided which yet.


3.  Finishing up In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen and starting in on Top Secret Twenty-One by Janet Evanovich; I'm picking it up at the library on my way home :)  Along with this, I'm excited to knock out some more squares on my Bookish Bingo: Summer Edition card!

4.  I read a great article on why teachers NEED summers off today.  In it, there were two great lines that I f…

W.O.W: Lucky Us

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine that allows bloggers to highlight releases they are eagerly awaiting.
Here's what I've got my eye on:

Title:  Lucky Us
Author:  Amy Bloom
Publication Date:  July 29, 2014
Page Count:  256

Summary via Goodreads
"My father's wife died. My mother said we should drive down to his place and see what might be in it for us."

So begins this remarkable novel by Amy Bloom, whose critically acclaimed Away was called "a literary triumph" by The New York Times. Brilliantly written, deeply moving, fantastically funny, Lucky Us introduces us to Eva and Iris. Disappointed by their families, Iris, the hopeful star, and Eva, the sidekick, journey across 1940s America in search of fame and fortune. Iris's ambitions take them from small-town Ohio to an unexpected and sensuous Hollywood, across the America of Reinvention in a stolen station wagon, to the jazz clubs and golden mansions of Long …

Teaser Tuesdays

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Teaser Tuesdays:  In Paradise Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading. Here are the rules: grab whatever you're reading, open to a random page, select no more than two sentence (NO SPOILERS), share the title and author, and GO!
Here's the teaser for this week:
"The cold of winter afternoon falls quickly.  Toward twilight, as the witness bearers straggle back toward the town, a weak sun, smoggy red, sinks behind the cropped misshapen trees along the road.  A woman murmurs that a faint odor of burning flesh still lingers here a half century later, and someone else recalls her mother's account of a woman who had smelled her fate while approaching Oswiecim in the cattle cars." --page 61-----In Paradise by Peter Matthiessen

A heavy teaser today...but they can't all be light and fluffy.

Happy reading!

Top Ten Tuesday: Characters I Would Want With Me On A Deserted Island

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and it's a way to share what you're loving in list form.  The topic changes every week, so there is always something new to discover!

This week's theme is:  Characters I Would Want With Me On A Deserted Island.  While it's pretty certain this would never happen, it's always nice to know what type of people you would surround yourself with in such a situation.

Here's my list in no particular order :)

Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games Trilogy
She'd be my go-to-girl for providing fresh food and for having a quick reaction time when needed.  Plus, she's tough as nails and I wouldn't really have to worry about her too much.  She can fend for herself. Ron Weasley from The Harry Potter Series
Purely for entertainment purposes.  He's funny, charming, and would be a pleasure to be around.  Plus, he has magical capabilities, so he could save you/fix things in a pinch. John Thornton fr…

Musing Mondays 6

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Musing Mondays # 6
Musing Mondays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading and is quite simple, really. It asks you to comment/muse each week on one of the following prompts:
Describe one of your reading habits.Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!Tell us what you're reading right now--what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; why you are (or aren't) enjoying it.Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books--let's here it, then! Here's what's on my mind today...
I had a very busy non-reading weekend.  While this makes me happy because I was able to see friends I haven't seen in a while and hit up a wedding all at the…

The House of Special Purpose: A Review

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John Boyne's The House of Special Purpose
Logistics
Title:  The House of  Special Purpose
Author:  John Boyne
Published:  May 7, 2009
Publishing Company:  Other Press
Page Count:  469

Summary via Goodreads
Part love story, part historical epic, part tragedy, The House of Special Purpose illuminates an empire at the end of its reign. Eighty-year-old Georgy Jachmenev is haunted by his past—a past of death, suffering, and scandal that will stay with him until the end of his days. Living in England with his beloved wife, Zoya, Georgy prepares to make one final journey back to the Russia he once knew and loved, the Russia that both destroyed and defined him. As Georgy remembers days gone by, we are transported to St. Petersburg, to the Winter Palace of the czar, in the early twentieth century—a time of change, threat, and bloody revolution. As Georgy overturns the most painful stone of all, we uncover the story of the house of special purpose

My Thoughts
This is the first book of…

Bookish (And Not So Bookish) Thoughts

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Highlights of the week/coming weekend:

1.  Yesterday after work was spent lounging poolside to combat the unnatural heat we've been experiencing here in the PNW (Pacific Northwest).  I love that there are opportunities like this and friends with pools who are down to open their doors during the work week for a little cooldown.  Naturally, we always come bearing some form of dinner and liquid libations; last night was bratwurst, bacon-ranch macaroni salad, chips, and beer.  I like to think we're pretty accommodating guests :)  To top the evening off, we were able to spend some lovely time in the hot tub afterward!

2.  Tonight, along with my lovely friend Lori @ Palmer's Page Turners, I'll be hitting up an awesome, FREE, concert in the park.  Parish Gap, a local band, puts on a great show of classic rock covers peppered with some originals.  Definitely check their stuff ou.


3.  Tomorrow night (Friday) I'll be heading down to Corvallis for dinner with a friend at M…

B.T.T: Summertime

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Booking Through Thursday:  Summertime
Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by Deb @ Booking Through Thursday. Every week she posts a book related prompt/question, you answer the prompt, and then link back to the original. Here's this week's:
Question/Prompt:  Summertime
Do your reading habits change in the summer? I wouldn't say that my reading habits change all that much in the summer.  I do think that I spend a lot of time reading year-round, but it's always nice to sit outside in the warm weather with a book.  I think that my big reading spurts are during late Fall, Winter, and early Spring because of the simple fact that we tend to get a fair amount of rain in the Pacific Northwest, so we spend a lot of time indoors.  Summertime is when we all venture outside for outdoor activities, so time spent reading might take a bit of a hit when the weather is nice.  However, I am perfectly content to sit on a blanket in the park/at the ocean/etc with a book and s…

W.O.W: The Fantastic Laboratory of Dr. Weigl

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine that allows bloggers to highlight releases they are eagerly awaiting.
Here's what I'm looking forward to:

Title:  The Fantastic Laboratory of Dr. Weigl:  How Two Brave Scientists Battled Typhus and Sabotaged the Nazis
Author:  Arthur Allen
Publication Date:  July 21, 2014
Page Count:  400

Summary via Goodreads
Few diseases are more gruesome than typhus. Transmitted by body lice, it afflicts the dispossessed refugees, soldiers, and ghettoized peoples causing hallucinations, terrible headaches, boiling fever, and often death. The disease plagued the German army on the Eastern Front and left the Reich desperate for a vaccine. For this they turned to the brilliant and eccentric Polish zoologist Rudolf Weigl. In the 1920s, Weigl had created the first typhus vaccine using a method as bold as it was dangerous for its use of living human subjects. The astonishing success of Weigl s techniques attracted th…

Teaser Tuesdays

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Teaser Tuesdays:  The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry
Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading. Here are the rules: grab whatever you're reading, open to a random page, select no more than two sentence (NO SPOILERS), share the title and author, and GO!
And here's this week's little tidbit:
"People tell boring lies about politics, God, and love.  You know everything you need to know about a person from the answer to the question, What is your favorite book?" --page 87-----The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry by Gabrielle Zevin

I am loving this book so far.  It overflows with book love!!!

Happy reading!

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Movies or TV Shows

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and it's a way to share what you're loving in list form. The topic changes every week, so there is always something new to discover!

This week's theme is:  Favorite Movies or TV Shows.  Oh, man, oh, man...where do I begin?  I'm going to go with TV shows for this week's post, because they're easier to narrow down!

Here are my favorites (past and present) in no particular order:

The Walking Dead
I am obsessed with this show.  Beyond obsessed.  It's kind of ridiculous.  I'll watch the marathons even though I've seen every single episode.  I also stick around after each episode and watch The Talking Dead.  But it's oh so good!  If you like zombies and aren't grossed out by gore...this is THE show for you...as long as Daryl and Glenn don't die.So You Think You Can Dance
Dancing?  Check!  Awesome choreography?  Check!  Alternating guest judges?  Check!  Returning all-stars?  …

Bookish (And Not So Bookish) Thoughts

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It's been unseasonably warm the last few weeks here in Oregon.  Typically, we are not an area that reaches 90 degrees often throughout the Summer; it can happen, but it's never this early in the year and it rarely sticks around for days at a time.  This year it's different.  The heat seemed to spring up on us quickly (think a difference of 20 degrees overnight).  I don't like it at all!  I am a 75 degree tops type of person and thoroughly enjoy the rain.  Normally this isn't an issue in western Oregon, but this year it is.
So, to combat the oppressing (to me) heat, I now have two AC units in my apartment.  Originally I had one that I utilized in the main living space (I rarely used it last year), but my parents are pretty much the best ever and suprised me with one for my bedroom...along with an awesome teal patio set for my porch...yesterday evening!  Needless to say I slept quite well last night :)

After installing both units, we all went out to dinner (my par…

W.O.W: Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine that allows bloggers to highlight releases they are eagerly awaiting.
Here's what I'm anticipating:

Title:  Those Who Leave and Those Who Stay
Author:  Elena Ferrante
Publication Date:  September 2, 2014 (translated from the Italian)
Page Count:  Not Known

Summary via Publishers Weekly
Surpassing the rapturous storytelling of the previous titles in the Neapolitan Novels (My Brilliant Friend, The Story of a New Name), Ferrante here reunites Elena and Lil, two childhood friends, who dissect subjects as complicated as their own relationship, including feminism and class, men and women, mothers and children, sex and violence, and origin and destiny. As the narrative unfolds in the late 1960s and early ’70s, the fiery Lila stays in Naples, having escaped an abusive marriage, and lives platonically with a man from the neighborhood, along with her young, possibly illegitimate son. The feisty Elena leaves …

A-Z Book Survey

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An A-Z Book Survey
A fun little A-Z Book Survey hosted by Jamie @ The Perpetual Page Turner.  I love doing these because it allows me to share some of my favorite reads with my fellow bloggers...perhaps they'll discover something they haven't heard of.  I know that I always do! 

Here we go!

Author You've Read the Most Books From I think that would be Italo Calvino...a brilliant Italian writer.  A close second would probably be J.K. Rowling.  I do love me some Harry Potter!  Oh...wait.  Nora Roberts.  I've read nearly all of her books because they're quick and don't require much thought. 

Best Sequel Ever This one is so difficult because there are so many great sequels, but I'm going to go with A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin.  It's the third book in the A Song of Fire and Ice series and it's so, so, so good!  So many shocking scenes and twists and turns!  Gah!  Cress by Marissa Meyer is also a fantastic sequel.  Really there are just too man…

Top Ten Tuesday: Blogging Confessions

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and it's a way to share what you're loving in list form.  The topic changes every week, so there is always something new to discover!

This week's theme is:  Blogging Confessions.  I'm really going to try to come up with ten blogging confessions, but I don't know if I can do it. 

Here goes!
I have well over 50 book reviews in my drafts folder that I need to finish.I stopped adding new books that need to be reviewed to my drafts folder months ago...so that number should probably be much closer to seventy...or more :(I go in big blogging spurts and then kind of disappear for months.  It becomes quite difficult to post consistently during certain times of the year for some reason.The only time I post consistently is during the month of April because I participate in the A-Z Blogging Challenge...so I'm FORCED to post something.  This was my third year participating and it's a lot of fun.If I do…

Teaser Tuesdays

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Teaser Tuesdays:  The Story of a New Name
Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading. Here are the rules: grab whatever you're reading, open to a random page, select no more than two sentence (NO SPOILERS), share the title and author, and GO!
And...for your reading pleasure...today's teaser!
"When they came home, exhausted, her husband made a scene and Lila did her best to provoke his fury.  She shouted that if he wanted someone who obeyed, and that's all, he was out of luck; she was not his mother or his sister, she would always make life difficult for him" --page 116           -----The Story of a New Name by Elena Ferrante

Happy reading!

Musing Mondays 5

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Musing Mondays #5
Musing Mondays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading and is quite simple, really. It asks you to comment/muse each week on one of the following prompts:

Describe one of your reading habits.Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!Tell us what you're reading right now--what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; why you are (or aren't) enjoying it.Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books--let's here it, then! Here's what's on my mind today...

I had a successful reading holiday weekend (woohoo!) and was able to finish Belle Cora by Phillip Margulies and Greetings from Somewhere Else by Monica McInerney. …

Lavender Morning: A Review

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Jude Deveraux's Lavender Morning
Logistics
Title:  Lavender Morning
Author:  Jude Deveraux
Published:  January 1, 2009
Publishing Company:  Atria Books
Page Count:  384

Summary via Goodreads
Jocelyn Minton is a woman torn between two worlds. Her mother grew up attending private schools and afternoon teas, but she married the local handyman. After her mother died when Joce was only five years old, her father remarried into his own class, and Joce became an outsider -- until she met Edilean Harcourt. Although she was sixty years Joce's senior, Miss Edi was a kindred soul who understood her like no one else ever had. When Miss Edi passes away, she leaves Joce all her worldly possessions, including an eighteenth-century house and a letter with clues to a mystery that began in 1941. In the letter, Miss Edi also mentions that she has found the perfect man for Joce -- a handsome young lawyer. Joce is shocked to learn that the mystery, the house, and the future love of her lif…

The Witness: A Review

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Nora Roberts' The Witness
Logistics
Title:  The Witness
Author:  Nora Roberts
Published:  January 1, 2012
Publishing Company:  Putnam Adult
Page Count:  757

Summary via Goodreads
Daughter of a controlling mother, Elizabeth finally let loose one night, drinking at a nightclub and allowing a strange man's seductive Russian accent lure her to a house on Lake Shore Drive. The events that followed changed her life forever.

Twelve years later, the woman known as Abigail Lowery lives on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozarks. A freelance programmer, she designs sophisticated security systems -- and supplements her own security with a fierce dog and an assortment of firearms. She keeps to herself, saying little, revealing nothing. But Abigail's reserve only intrigues police chief Brooks Gleason. Her logical mind, her secretive nature, and her unromantic viewpoints leave him fascinated but frustrated. He suspects that Abigail needs protection from something -- and tha…

W.O.W: The Revenge of Seven

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekley meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine that allows bloggers to highlight releases they are eagerly awaiting.

Here's what I'm looking forward to:

Title:  The Revenge of Seven
Author:  Pittacus Lore
Publication Date:  August 26, 2014
Page Count:  416

Summary via Goodreads
The worst was supposed to be over. We were reunited after a decade apart. We were discovering the truth of our past. We were training and getting stronger every day. We were even happy...

We never imagined the Mogodorians could turn one of our own against us. We were fools for trusting Five. And now Eight is lost forever. I would do anything to bring him back, but that's impossible. Instead, I will do whatever it takes to destroy every last one of them.

I've spent my entire life hiding from them, and they've stolen everything away from me. But that stops now. We're going to take the battle to them. We have a new ally who knows their weaknesses. And I fin…

Teaser Tuesdays

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Teaser Tuesday:  Greetings from Somewhere Else
Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly meme hosted by MizB @ Should Be Reading. Here are the rules: grab whatever you're reading, open to a random page, select no more than two sentence (NO SPOILERS), share the title and author, and GO!
Here's this week's teaser...
"She decided to do what she always did when she was feeling overwhelmed.  Make a list.  She sat at the dining-room table and grabbed a notepad from the pile in the center.  Top of the list?  That was easy.  PANIC." --page 29-----Greetings from Somewhere Else by Monica McInerney

Happy reading!

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Classic Books

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and it's a way to share what you're loving in list form.  The topic changes every week, so there is always something new to discover!

This week's theme is:  Favorite Classic Books.  Now, classic is a subjective term in literature and can span quite a large selection.  So for this list I'm going to list my favorite classics published before 1900.

Here ya go:

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (published 1882)
I read this book while living in Vienna and quickly fell in love with it.  It must have been fate that I chose to read it when I did because during the holidays that year, the Vienna Opera House put on a ballet of the book.  Score!  It was phenomenal.Sentimental Education by Gustave Flaubert (published 1869)
This is one of those strange books where you absolutely loathe ALL of the characters, but find the book fantastic.  Such a great read.Les Miserables by Victor Hugo (published 1862)
A hefty piece to get …